Three Stages of Salvation

Three Stages of Salvation
Hebrews 2:3 says “How shall we escape¹ª if we have neglected so great a salvation,¹ª which, having had its beginning in being spoken by the Lord, has been confirmed to us by those who heard”.
Salvation here refers back to what is mentioned in 1:14. It is God’s full salvation, from the forgiveness of sins to the sharing of the coming kingdom with glory. It refers not only to what Christ has done and will do for us but also to Himself, the One who is able to save us to the uttermost (7:25). As the Son of God —as God —and as the Son of Man —as man —He is our salvation. His wonderful person plus His splendid work constitute so great a salvation, a salvation that none of us should neglect. Our negligence will cause us to miss this great salvation’s (1) most precious part —the enjoying of Christ as our saving life and rest in this age; and (2) most glorious part —the inheriting of Christ’s kingdom with glory in the coming age.

Man is of three parts: spirit, soul and body. God’s salvation is of three stages to fully save this three-part man.

The first stage of salvation is the initial stage. This stage saves our spirit. God has done this firstly by His death on the cross to take care of our objective problem before God. Second, as the life-giving Spirit, He has regenerated us in our spirit. This stage includes redemption, forgiveness of sins, cleansing of sins, justification and reconciliation. The result is regeneration. This is the beginning of the Christian life.
The second stage is the progressing stage. This stage saves us in our soul. Although God is now in our human spirit through regeneration, our soul is still full of Satan’s nature. We think evil thoughts. We lie and hate others. We are jealous and full of our own opinions. We love what God hates and hate what God loves. We are evil, we are sin, and even in a certain sense, we are Satan. But, we are also Christians who have received the divine life into us. In this stage, God deals with our evil soul. Regeneration only puts Christ into our spirit. We need to allow Christ to spread into our soul day by day. This will take our entire lifetime. By opening to Him, by praying and by confessing our sins, we allow Him to spread in us. This spreading is our sanctification. In this way, He deposits His holy nature into our soul from our spirit. At the same time He transforms us from an old man to a new man, from being full of the satanic life to being full of God.
The third stage is the completing stage. In this stage our body is saved and God’s full salvation reaches its climax. It is the result of the second stage. Leaving the starting block in the race is the initial stage. Running the course is the progressing stage. Crossing the finish line is the completing stage. You cannot cross the finish line unless you have started and progressed in the course of the race. The faster you progress, the earlier you will complete the race.

This stage is glorious. It finally solves all our problems and consummates God’s eternal purpose. In this stage, our body is conformed to the body of the Lord’s glory. Our body is transfigured, glorified. We inherit God’s kingdom to reign with Christ as co-kings and obtain the topmost enjoyment of the Lord. By this stage, our spirit will be full of life due to regeneration. Our soul will be full of Christ due to sanctification and transformation. We will think the way God thinks. We will love what God loves and hate what He hates. Our will will always choose what God would choose, and our body will be full of the glory of the Lord. Then we will fully be sons of God, full of God’s life, expressing God and representing Him eternally. Through all of this process, we will be built together as the glorious church, the New Jerusalem. Hallelujah! God will be fully satisfied and we will be fully saved!
We can only arrive at this stage by being initially saved and then by being sanctified and transformed. Brothers and sisters, don’t you want to arrive at the third stage? If you do, then go on to enjoy Him as the Spirit and the Word. Then, cooperate with Him daily. Allow Him to spread in you by always following His leading within you and by confessing your sins and shortcomings to Him. In these ways, you will go on from the initial stage of your salvation through the progressive stage, and you will enter into the full enjoyment of your salvation in the completing stage.

Further References:
See Compendium of God’s Full Salvation (LSM),
Chapter 20 and 26;
Holy Bible- Recovery Version with foot notes

1.    Life-study of Matthew (Lee/LSM), p. 587.
2.    Life-study of Romans (Lee/LSM), pp. 13, 252-254, 273-275, 453-454, 494-495, 556, 565-566.
3.    Life-study of Colossians (Lee/LSM), pp. 245-246, 525-526.
4.    Life-study of Second Corinthians (Lee/LSM), pp. 33-34, 105-106, 524, 526-529.
5.    Life-study of Genesis (Lee/LSM), pp. 124-125.
6.    The Kingdom (Lee/LSM), p. 390.
7.    Life-study of Hebrews (Lee/LSM), pp. 104-105, 136-137, 230-231, 263-264, 422-423.
8.    Life-study of Ephesians (Lee/LSM), pp. 168, 314-315, 434, 480-481, 551-552.
9.    Life-study of John (Lee/LSM), pp. 67-68, 218, 383, 407-409, 458, 491, 565-567.
10.  The Divine Dispensing of the Divine Trinity (Lee/LSM), pp. 223, 234.
11.  The Spirit and Body (Lee/LSM), p. 25.
12.  Life-study of Philippians (Lee/LSM), pp. 86, 97-98, 328, 338, 340-342, 356-357, 364, 383.
13.  Life-study of Revelation (Lee/LSM), p. 428.
14.  Young People’s Training (Lee/LSM), pp. 179-180.
15.  Life-study of First Peter (Lee/LSM), pp. 92, 129, 134, 303-305.
16.  Life-study of Exodus (Lee/LSM), pp. 407, 550, 888-889.
17.  The Kernel of the Bible (Lee/LSM), p. 17.
18.  Life-study of First Corinthians (Lee/LSM), pp. 418, 523-524.
19.  Experiencing Christ as the Offerings for the Church Meetings (Lee/LSM), pp. 25-26, 52.
20.  Life Messages, vol. 1 (Lee/LSM), p. 256.
21.  Concerning the Triune God, the Father, the Son, and the Spirit (Lee/LSM), pp. 1-5.
22.  The Stream (Lee/LSM), vol. 4, no. 2, p. 13.
23.  Truth Messages (Lee/LSM), pp. 9-10, 16-18.
24.  Perfecting Training (Lee/LSM), pp. 341-343, 347-350.
25.  Experience of Christ (Lee/LSM), pp. 45-46.
26.  The Experience of Life (Lee/LSM), pp. 151-152, 244.
27.  The Economy of God (Lee/LSM), pp. 73, 90-93.
28.  The Parts of Man (Lee/LSM), pp. 21-22, 33.
29.  Life-study of Galatians (Lee/LSM), pp. 242, 251-252.
30.  Life-study of Second Peter (Lee/LSM), pp. 27-28, 45.

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Take heed to yourselves…

I just want to share to you this portion which really nourished me these days while going though a certain situation. This is sent to me by an FTTA sister name Emily.

-“In our Full Ministry of Christ class, I appreciated that every situation is arranged to sink us into our spirit. At midnight, Paul and Silas were in prison and instead of murmuring and reasoning, they were praying and singing hymns of praise to God (Acts 16:25). When we are in our situations and circumstances, we need to realize that they are arranged by the Lord to sink us into our spirit. Instead of murmuring and reasoning, we should pray and sing.

This week, I enjoyed just singing, praying, praising, and thanking. It’s not easy all the time to turn from your situation(s) and turn to your spirit, but when you’re desperate to get out of your situation, you’ll do anything to touch the Lord.

I was really touched and exposed in our young people’s fellowship on Wednesday. The brothers were sharing with us about how to rely on the Lord especially durning this time of the term when you’re tired and your self effort has almost run out.

Acts 20:28 says, “Take heed to yourselves and to all the flock, among whom the Holy Spirit has placed you as overseers to shepherd the church of God, which He obtained through His own blood.” It doesn’t say take care of the flock then yourselves. It’s important to take care of yourself first. In our service, the most important thing is our person. It’s not what we do or how we do it, but how your person is doing.

It was nice to be reminded that the training is designed to break down your person. The training is not to make you suffer but for you to be terminated. I know this may sound bad or strange or totally contrary to what the world teaches us, but when you realize who you are, you also realize that you need another life (Gal. 2:20).

When you are in the training, you may be able to fake it for a period of time (I’ve gotten pretty good at this), but who you are eventually gets exposed. “Take heed to yourselves…” Take care of your personal contact with the Lord first. Before contacting anyone, contact the Lord first. Come to the Lord again and again. Never graduate from coming to the Lord. Come to the Lord as a source of supply.

How do we take care of our contact with the Lord? We must be persons of prayer. As persons who serve the Lord, we first need to learn and exercise not to be serving ones of prayer but persons of prayer.

To pray is to contact and absorb God. The longer you serve, the easier it is not to depend on the Lord because you know what to do; you get settled into a routine. You know how to lead the singing, read the Bible with the young people, explain ministry to the young people, etc. These are all good things, but what is the source? Are you the source or is the Lord Himself the source? Sometimes we are burning, but our fuel is our capacity and disposition. If you are a person of prayer, contacting and absorbing God, the source will be God Himself.

You may be the model serving one, but if you are the source, sooner or later, you will burn out. How do you serve the Lord year after year? You have to come to the Lord as the source of supply. The time will come when you have to rely on the Lord.

Another problem is that we know too much. To pray is also to say that He is and we are not. We often know so much that the source of what we do is us.

We need to be persons who have a prayer life. That means that when we pray, He is and we are not. Whatever we are means nothing. 1 Tim. 2:1 says that we need to first of all, pray…The main prerequisite to taking care of the flock is to pray. Do you feel like you are useful if all you could do was pray? Don’t you think brother Nee was useful when he was praying? Dont you think many of those prayers touched the throne and were answered? We need to spend time with the Lord in prayer.

The most crucial time with the Lord is in the morning. Every morning, we need to have a solid, personal contact with the Lord. How do we come to the Lord to spend time with Him? When we come to the Lord, we should come to Him without any persons, concerns, or situations. Just come to Him.

Many times your service becomes your “source of supply.” Just come to Him because you want Him. If you don’t contact the Lord on a daily basis, it will be very hard to continue. All of us will have many years to serve the Lord, but we need to become Him in order to be the right kind of person to serve Him. You need to become Christ in life and in nature. The only way to do this is to contact Him day by day.

Towards the end, I was really exposed when brother Peter said that we need to learn to be weak. We don’t like to be weak. We like to be sufficient and strong. We defend ourselves and justify ourselves. In 2 Cor. 12:4-8, there is a suffering that Paul is going through with a thorn in his flesh. But in verse 9, he says that the Lord’s power is perfected in weakness. The footnote says that our weakness is needed. We are just too strong, capable, and faithful. We need a healthy dose of weakness. Often times we dont pray because we are too strong.
When I came to the training, I thought I was a weak person. But in the last few weeks, I’ve noticed that I am stronger in my self than I realize. This also touched on some things sister Ann Buntain had touched on in our fellowship times as well. Eventually, if the training does what it is supposed to do (if I cooperate and allow it to do what it is supposed to do), I will be brought to the point where I am weak in my self and my source is only Christ.

With all this being said, I’ve been practicing coming to the Lord in the morning in prayer without anyone or anything on my mind. Although I’m still quite concerned for some of my friends, family, yp, goal in the morning is not for those things, but to contact and absorb the One who needs to be my source of supply. I’ve even been skipping a few breakfasts just so I can spend at least 40 minutes or so with the Lord. This has really been a supply to me this week and I recommend doing it.

“Our experiences are experiences that we wouldn’t buy for a penny but wouldn’t sell for a million dollars.”-Brother Peter Harvey

Hymn #671:
Deep down into the depths of this Thy Name,
My God, I sink and dwell in calm delight;
Thou art enough however long the day,
Thou art enough however dark the night.

Thou art my God — the All-Sufficient One,
Thou canst create for me whate’er I lack;
Thy mighty hand has strewn the lonely track
With miracles of love and tender care.

For me Thy trusting one. My God I dare
Once more to fling myself upon Thy breast,
And there adore Thy ways in faith’s deep rest,
And there adore Thy ways in faith’s quiet rest.”